Monday, May 30, 2011

For God's Sake

Last week I was sitting in the coffee shop waiting, with other homeschooling mamas, for our sons and daughters to finish their required testing.   Our conversations ranged from curriculum to culture wars.  Culture wars.   We talked about how we were raising our children intentionally, how our very lives are so...

Riding in the car yesterday with friends.  The husband softly lamenting about something hard for him to put in words.  He thinks Christians should live differently from the rest of the world, stand for our beliefs.  I say something about how, isn't that a universal problem?  A universal truth?  I say it quietly, more a musing to myself than a statement of conviction.  Maybe I'm a coward too.

Today Ann shares her list of thanks.  She mentions filing away her family's personal thanks, their history from last month, into the ongoing "diary" of their lives.

And I think about Ann and her family's diary.  I wonder at what that will look like a thousand years from now to people exploring, excavating to find out what it was like to live in 2011.   What will they think of the documents bearing the Voskamp family history?

The discovery will undoubtedly be that there were many different cultures on the earth in those times.  Within greater cultures there were smaller cultures... even down to the culture of one family.  Rugged individualism.
But what will it say about us,  really?  Was Ann's family different, just to be different?  What about you?  Did you take a stand for what you believed in?  If so, why?  Is it because you thought you needed to or should rebel against the greater culture of your time?
If anyone digs up evidence from my life a thousand years from now, will he find clues that we,  my family and I, lived not only differently, but more importantly.... purposefully.  Will the experts be able to determine what that purpose was,...... or will they think we were just soldiers in the culture war of our time?

I want them to know we did it for Him.... for God's sake.

Counting the gifts  #761-779

car pooling adults
fellowship of the saints
funny stories

many hands lovingly serving each other

a morning without rain
hot tea

probiotics in a bottle
that they were already in her pantry

Him hearing

adventurous learning
finally being ready for the leap
doing what I believe

dust cloths, vacuums, cleaners, elbow grease, trash bags
order restored

sweet children grappling with growing
friendships mended

family history
a chance to make it about Him

holy experience

Monday, May 23, 2011

The Blessings #738-760

longer days
the wrapping up of one school year
the anticipation of the next

my man mending fences
the pup playing on the right side of those fences

if only for a day...  71 degrees

messes to clean up

a body that can bend to do the work
a sound mind

a call out to my Sweet T
the stories I'll hear from her end
the stories I'll tell from mine

Awana celebrations

my kids walking to church

Spring Choir Concert

summer plans
a happy son and his friend

my daddy's picture

sofas and mugs

my beloved:
a wise and tender daddy
a good man

me, a fortunate and happy wife

holy experience

Monday, May 9, 2011

California Adventures Part III


Let the pictures paint the words.....

Point Loma:

Cabrillo Monument at Point Loma

Fun in the sun:

Samuel with Morgan and Travis Dwan
Sarah Grace with Michaela Dwan

Hotel Del Coronado

San Diego

The Dragon Tree

So much to see and do in the San Diego area, but we decided to spend our time in Coronado and enjoy our incredible upgraded ocean-front accommodations.  We did venture over to Point Loma one day and explored the area discovered by Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo of Portugal long ago.  

The weather was perfect and afforded us lots of time to swim and play in the sand.  
The city of San Diego, as viewed from across the bay at Coronado, was stunning.  Truly, it is a beautiful city by the sea.  I really fell in love with the place where the sunshine burns through the misty fog and salty air.  Where just off the shore, on a clear sunny morning you can watch dolphins breach high and away from the water.  And at night the bright lights from Mexico, just a shore away, shine into the darkness.  Where American Navy and their Seals run up and down the beach building their strength and resolve, and where their ships anchor off the coast, not resting, but protecting.  It's a place where their fighter jets slice through the atmosphere at any given hour.   And where, when all their earthly service is done, they rest in white-markered graves on the hills of Point Loma.   

It's a beautiful place.

And because it's Monday, I count blessings....

# 718-737

salty air
warm sand
fires on the beach
stars in the sky
palm trees
old hotels
fish tacos
flip flops
touch, smell, sight, taste
roller coasters
people in dress-up
friends that help
a pup that forgives

holy experience

Friday, May 6, 2011

California Adventures Part II


Sunday evening we headed to Disneyland.  We stayed at a Disneyland resort hotel and hit California Adventures on Monday. 

and of course swimming in the evening.....

Tuesday we checked out of our hotel and walked over to Disneyland.

and then Samuel's favorite part:  the Jedi Knight training!  He got chosen to train as a Jedi Knight, and fought Darth Maul!

And then, at the end of our Disney adventure, while the kids and I were in a shoppe, Greg made some pics of the retiring of the colors....  this being the day after our brave Navy Seals found and killed
 Osama bin Laden in Pakistan.  A ten year mission completed.

 Portland, OR. is often distinguished as having a European feel to it.  

Interestingly, for me, coming to California is coming back to America.  With all it's diversity of people and places, distinct Mexican influence, balance between work and play, beauty and grit, it embodies so much of what is so grand about the U.S.

Check back later as our trip continues and culminates at our stay by the sea....


Thursday, May 5, 2011

California Adventures Part I

It's been awhile since I have blogged about the regular goings ons of the Liechty family!  We have been looking forward to our California vacation for a very long time.  As the rains in Oregon have continued steadily we surely have fallen short in the Vitamin D department, so our spirits AND bodies have been longing for some sunshine!

We arrived last Saturday in Long Beach and from there went directly to the American Girl store.

From there we enjoyed dinner with some of the California Liechtys.  It was a great time for Greg to reconnect and for me and the kids to make some new family connections.

On Sunday we met Greg's cousin, Jenny,  at the Santa Ana Zoo.  Jenny has worked there for ten years as a zookeeper responsible for several of the monkey exhibits for which the zoo is most well known for.  In fact, based on agreements originating years ago at the zoo's conception, the place must keep at least 50 monkeys on the premises at all times.
We had amazing once-in-a-lifetime experiences feeding and spending time with many of the animals there behind-the-scenes.

and here is a pic of us on one of the elephants trained by the same people that trained the star elephant of the new movie:  Water for Elephants....
Our elephant was named Becky.... I guess the star of the movie no longer has to give rides at the zoo!

Here are some little lion-faced tamarin babies clinging to their mama.  They were just born that very morning!

Look at their little arms wrapped around mama....

Here is a Great Anteater and her baby that was born just this past Thursday!

After the zoo, we went on to meet another cousin, Beverly, and her family at Claim Jumper.  We enjoyed a lovely meal and visit.  We all did lots of sharing about our puppy-kids.... sure did make us miss Toby Doo! 

Well, that ends part I.  My next post will review a bit from our Disney experience.  We are having such a great time here!